News: Quick Takes

School-choice advocate Allison named to UNC Board of Governors

Darrell Allison (Photo Courtesy of Parents for Educational Freedom in North Carolina)
Darrell Allison (Photo Courtesy of Parents for Educational Freedom in North Carolina)

RALEIGH — The University of North Carolina’s governing board has a new member, and for once, no one is protesting.

Darrell Allison, founder and president of Parents for Educational Freedom in North Carolina, was elected unanimously Thursday to replace former UNC Board of Governors member John Fennebresque.

“Darrell Allison is a person of the highest character I have known for some time,” said Sen. Bill Rabon, R-Brunswick. “I think that he’s going to bring to the Board of Governors the expertise, and the passion, and personal knowledge that we need on that board, I think he is going to represent the state well, and I think he’s going to represent the people of North Carolina well.”

Fennebresque, who served as board chairman prior to his controversial resignation, left the board in October 2015 amid questions about the sudden firing of then UNC President Tom Ross, and the hiring of Ross’ replacement, former U.S. Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings.

Allison will serve the remaining two years of Fennebresque’s term. Allison, a graduate of N.C. Central University and UNC Law School, spent the past two years on NCCU’s Board of Trustees.

“I am honored to have been selected by our state’s lawmakers to serve as a member of the UNC Board of Governors,” said Allison. “A passion for education has been a defining theme of my life, and has fueled my work to expand access and opportunity in both K-12 and higher education.”

Allison, in partnership with a group of African-American House and Senate Democrats, last month announced a bipartisan coalition in support of school-choice options, including charter schools and private school vouchers — two issues that have been hotly debated along party lines.